of hiring decision-makers say a lack of qualified candidates is their #1 challenge.


of applicants would abandon an online application if it took more than 15 minutes to complete.


Recruiting At Scale

Companies that are recruiting at scale face problems with ensuring their candidate experience remains strong — or the damage to their employer branding and reputation could be irreparable.

This is all without mentioning the knock-on effects that bringing large numbers of new hires onboard can have on an organization’s culture, and the difficulty of ensuring diversity goals are met at a higher scale.

This guide will outline some steps you can take to make sure you meet your high-volume hiring goals without compromising on company culture, candidate experience, diversity, or quality of hire. We’ll cover the main challenges of hiring at scale, the key metrics you should be tracking, and what you can do to make sure you meet your goals. We’ll also share insights from some of Talentful’s clients who have successfully stayed ahead of their high-volume hiring demands, even during the pandemic.


The Challenges Of High-Volume Hiring In 2023

Whether you’re working on a company restructure after a merger or acquisition, building a team of contractors for a special project, or just need a year-round pipeline of quality candidates, hiring at scale is not for the faint of heart. Here are some of the key challenges:

Understanding the key roles to hire for

Talent acquisition leaders need to fully understand the roles they need to fill, but hiring managers and other stakeholders are not always clear on what they need.

Sourcing large pools of qualified candidates

With many companies struggling to fill roles, it’s a competitive market for the top talent. Recruiters and talent leaders need tools to help them source enough candidates for the seats they need to fill.

Shortlisting candidates

When faced with a huge amount of data, recruiters need tools to help them sort the wheat from the chaff (without inadvertently missing out on qualified candidates).

Optimising the application process

In this applicant’s market, the top-quality candidates are simply not going to waste their time filling out long and tedious applications, so companies must adapt their processes.

Working with inefficient recruiting tools and/or a limited hiring team

In fast-growing companies, the initial period of growth can be challenging for your talent function, and the first step is understanding where you’re going wrong.

5 Practical Tips To Help You Meet Your High-Volume Hiring Goals


Conduct talent audits to understand skill gaps and roles to fill

A well-rounded talent function isn’t just a bonus for business — it’s crucial. The first step in scaling a company should be an in-depth audit of your talent team to assess what’s working well, and what needs to be improved.


Use data to your advantage

Data is one of the most important tools at your disposal as a talent acquisition leader. By tracking key metrics like Time to Hire (T2H), Cost Per Hire (CPH), and which source channels are working the hardest for you, you can identify any weak points in your process and take steps to correct them.


Don’t lose sight of candidate experience

It’s easy to let your focus on candidate experience slip when you’re hiring at scale. After all, when you need to fill seats fast, automating certain parts of the process is a great time-saver. However, it’s important to do this without losing your organization’s “human” side or subjecting candidates to long and inefficient hiring processes.


Use your employees’ network to increase reach

Did you know that the average company’s employees have ten times more connections than the company has followers on LinkedIn? This is a vast pool of candidates that you can tap into. Plus, a warm introduction from an employee is much more likely to get a response than a cold InMail.


Don’t neglect your employer brand

According to data from Seenit, 71% of job seekers say they check online reviews of a company before applying for a role — and 58% said that a negative review had deterred them from applying. When you’re trying to source and attract talent at scale, these are not stats you can ignore.

A Quick Guide To Talent Audits

The purpose of a talent acquisition audit is to determine what’s working well within your talent function — and what isn’t. A robust and effective talent function allows companies to attract, hire and retain top talent, and is integral to business and growth. Talent audits are a crucial tool that can give you an accurate picture of where you stand currently in comparison to where you need to be. By identifying any skill gaps or weaknesses in your talent function, you can quickly correct these and boost your chances of landing top talent.

The importance of talent audits in the context of COVID-19

Over the past two years, many company leaders have had to make difficult decisions including restructuring and even letting go of valued employees. Others have seen unprecedented growth, which many were unprepared for.

Whether it’s a pandemic or a change in the market, businesses have always needed to adapt and be reactive to change. By conducting an in-depth talent audit, you’ll be able to identify any gaps in your resources or in-house skills and take action to correct them.

The Talentful approach to talent audits

At Talentful, we’ve designed an in-depth talent audit that combines our expertise with insights from the 500+ innovative tech businesses we’ve worked with, ranging from startups to global enterprises. Once we have the data we need, we plot this against the Talentful Maturity Model, allowing us to assess six key areas:

  1. Process and strategy
  2. Candidate attraction
  3. Candidate assessment
  4. Tools
  5. Analytics
  6. Employer branding

Our team of experts can then advise you on the steps to take to accelerate your talent function so that you can successfully attract, hire and retain top-tier talent at scale.

Using Data: 5 Key Metrics To Track

Tracking key metrics can help you to identify and eliminate any weak spots in your recruitment processes.

Time to hire (T2H) and cost per hire (CPH)

Tracking T2H and CPH across all positions gives you a bird’s eye view of the efficiency of your recruitment processes, especially when compared to industry averages. If your T2H is long, or your CPH is higher than expected, you’ll likely need to look into other metrics in detail to see where problems are arising.

Time in process step, interview-to-hire, and acceptance rate

Tracking the time spent in each stage can help you to streamline your recruitment processes. For example, if it’s taking a week or more for hiring managers to get their feedback back to recruiters, your organization could be losing great candidates to more reactive companies. On the other hand, if your interview-to-hire rate is low, you may need to add an extra pre-interview step to help you shortlist more efficiently. A lower-than-expected acceptance rate is also a red flag and could indicate that you need to work on your employer branding and candidate experience.

Source channels and engagement for different roles

If you’re not tracking the effectiveness of each source channel you use, you could be wasting time on channels that aren’t performing. Also, remember that this may differ for different roles. For example, companies can see a significant increase in engagement and attract more quality candidates by sponsoring the job posts that already perform well organically on LinkedIn.

Optimizing Candidate Experience

Candidate experience (CX) can get left by the wayside when companies are hiring at pace, but it could be of critical importance. After all, 58% of employees have declined a job offer because of poor CX. Candidate experience can even affect the company’s bottom line: in 2017, Virgin Media revealed that it may have been costing them $5 million every year. Here are some best practices to follow:

Get buy-in from hiring managers and internal stakeholders

Ensuring everyone understands and agrees on the process is the first step towards a smooth and positive candidate experience. Discuss each step and what needs to accomplish ahead of time.

Shorten the application process

The best candidates are short on time. Consider cutting unnecessary steps in the hiring process, and use one-click applications when you can. Recruiters can boost conversion rates by keeping application time short — ideally, to five minutes or less.

Automate where you can (but keep it human)

Increasing touch-points for candidates with automated follow-ups is a great way to let them know their application is getting your attention — and using well-branded, useful content can help you to keep the experience “human”. Talent assessment tools can also help you to automate parts of the selection process and cut down on shortlisting time.

Make sure it’s accessible

Not everyone experiences your recruitment process in the same way. It’s important to ensure your application forms, tests, and interviews are accessible to those who are neurodivergent or visually or hearing impaired, for example.

3 Quick Tips To Improve Candidate Experience

Outline your recruitment process on your website so applicants know what to expect.

Send automated surveys to all candidates so you can monitor and adapt processes.

Share interviewers’ LinkedIn profiles ahead of time so candidates can prepare.

Increase Reach With Employee Networks

When you’re hiring at scale, you need to reach a lot more candidates than usual. Two of the most effective ways to achieve this are building a solid employer brand and tapping into your employees’ networks.

Use your employees’ networks

The average company’s employees have ten times more connections on LinkedIn than their company page has followers. Depending on the size of your company, this could be a huge pool to tap into. Plus, no one knows what it’s like to work for an organization better than its employees, so they’re the perfect people to recommend others for jobs. You can use tools like Teamable to automate employee referrals, but a good way to get started is just to encourage employees to share company content on social media.

Don’t neglect your employer brand

Research from LinkedIn suggests that 75% of employees research an employer’s brand before even applying for a job. Although building a strong employer brand doesn’t happen overnight, you can make a solid start by sharing meaningful content that shows what your company stands for — and what it’s like to work for you. Being authentic about what makes you different goes a long way, and tracking metrics like social engagement, employee referrals, and quality of hire can help you to understand what’s working.


The Side-Effects Of Hiring At Scale

Organisational impacts

A large enterprise will never have the same personal, everyone-knows-everyone feel as an early-stage startup. And while that’s not necessarily a bad thing, scaling companies do need to think about how growth will affect their company culture.

Organizations should set out the core values, mission, and vision that define them before embarking on a high-volume hiring spree. This way, they can incorporate these into their employer branding and throughout the candidate experience.

Leaders should work with employees to determine the aspects of company culture that are most important to them, so they know where to focus their efforts as the company grows. It can also be helpful to distill the most important aspects of the company’s vision into a short mantra, like Google’s “Don’t Be Evil”.

Lessened focus on diversity

One of the challenges of high-volume hiring is ensuring that diversity goals are met on a larger scale. Given the increased pressure to fill roles, it can be difficult to keep the focus on diversity. However, according to data from Glassdoor, 76% of job-seekers consider diversity an important factor when looking for a new job — so not focusing on it could actually hurt your hiring efforts. Plus, having a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture is essential for companies that want to retain top talent too — a Deloitte study found that turnover was 22% lower in the most inclusive companies.

Here are a few ways to include diversity, equity, and inclusion in your strategy even when hiring at scale:

• Review your job descriptions to eliminate biased language
• Widen your search field to look at non-traditional career paths
• Broaden your search with diverse schools or professional organisations
• Make the fact that you’re an inclusive employer a key part of your employer brand

3 Talent Leaders Share Their
High-Volume Hiring Success Stories

Download the full guide today to find out how Atlassian made 136 hires in 12 months with a limited hiring team.

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